Mekayla Bali’s mother is hoping a $50,000 reward will make a difference in the search for the Yorkton teen who disappeared in April 2016.
Paula Bali said she was amazed when an anonymous donor in her community came forward offering to double the initial reward from $25,000 up to $50,000 for her daughter’s safe return.
“I think it speaks to what a generous and really empathetic individual this person is. We just thank him from the bottom of our hearts and I can’t even express how this gives us hope,” Bali said.
“That’s what we need in Mekayla’s case is hope. That we can find her, that circumstances will be different, someone will be motivated to come forward with information that they may have.”
Mekayla was 16 years old when she was last seen at the Yorkton bus depot on April 12, 2016. After two years of police investigation and search efforts led by her mother, there are still no solid leads on her case.
Despite hundreds of tips coming in from across Canada and many in the U.S., even a few from as far away as Europe, Bali still doesn’t have any clear answers about what happened to her daughter or where she might be.
Along with the total reward of $50,000 for Mekayla’s safe return, the donor has earmarked $10,000 for valid information that leads to her whereabouts.
Bali said people might assume everyone knows what they know, but she encourages anyone with any kind of information to come forward because it could help make a difference.
While she and her children used to make a big deal about Christmas every year, she hasn’t been able to bring herself to celebrate at all in the years her daughter has been missing.
“It’s just so devastating and it’s such a painful time, so you just don’t want to deal with it. So in our house there is no Christmas,” Bali explained.
She said before Mekayla went missing they were really hardcore into Christmas for the sense of fun and family, but all of that has changed.
“To have someone just literally ripped out of your life and to not have any answers and to not have the investigation move forward – you can’t imagine how devastating that is.”